A shame and a waste

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Get out the limbo stick! Let's measure just how low Marion Williams can go.

In claiming he had illicitly obtained information from city Administrator Fred Russell's computer hard drive, the Augusta commissioner revealed himself to be either a liar or a thief.

It now appears he was an unrepentant liar: An investigation into the alleged theft by the Richmond County Sheriff's Office revealed no security breach and no hard-drive copying.

Meanwhile, Williams, a two-term commissioner leaving office at the end of the year, finally was called to account for $2,663.66 in unpaid property taxes, after citizens group CSRA Help began investigating whether he was holding office illegally for being delinquent.

Officials told the Chronicle editorial department this past week that it appears he broke no oath of office, though CSRA Help disagrees and is pursuing the matter in court.

Regardless, what a horrible example he has set.

Williams only raised eyebrows higher Thursday when he announced that some mystery person had been dispatched by him to pay his taxes for him.

As a politician and sitting member of the Augusta Commission, it would be entirely unethical and quite possibly illegal for Williams to allow someone else to pay his taxes.

He needs to reveal who it was and whose money it was.

Or he needs to be forced to reveal it.

We had been wondering about the CSRA Help court action - whether it was worth going after Williams, given that he will leave office none too soon. But it appears the combative, uncooperative Williams will continue to distract and derail the community's efforts to move ahead each and every day he remains in office. What a horrible shame.

Consider the time and attention he has drawn to himself just over the hard-drive affair. It was energy the city could have focused on providing his constituents, and everyone else in Augusta, a better quality of life. But he chose to lie through his teeth and create yet another time-wasting imbroglio, the kind of which he seems to draw nourishment from.

Consider, too, the finite and precious resources he stole from the sheriff's department. Several investigators spent days interviewing computer personnel and others in the city government to determine the possibility of Williams having received bootleg information from Russell's hard drive. It's possible, God forbid, that some crime went undetected or unresolved due directly to Williams' lies and dereliction of duty.

Again, what a shame and a tragic waste. When Williams ascended to the position of mayor pro tem in January 2005, we heralded the moment as a potential for great change and improvement in the city. Considering Williams' well-earned reputation for confounding, we opined that, with a little good will on his part, as mayor pro tem, "perhaps no one in the community has the opportunity that Marion Williams does to serve as a bridge to the future." Indeed, at the time, he promised "even those who didn't vote for me" that "I'm still their mayor pro tem. I'm going to support them and help them as much as I can."

How sad. He lied back then, too.

Comments (25) Add comment
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habersham100
177
Points
habersham100 07/08/07 - 05:33 am
0
0
I was taught when I was

I was taught when I was growing up that if you couldn't say something good about someone, you shouldn't say anything at all... Therefore, I have pondered on the subject of Marion Williams for some time and have kept silent. Now, I have come up with something to say: "He dresses nicely." Wonder who buys his clothes? The same one, maybe, who paid his taxes? Oh, I wasn't supposed to say that, was I? Oh, well, I tried... All the things you say about him are probably true, but you have to admit that he's very good at what he does. After all, he's had lots of practice, and practice makes perfect.

patriciathomas
42
Points
patriciathomas 07/08/07 - 07:46 am
0
0
Five more months. I have the

Five more months. I have the feeling these will be very long months.

intheknow
16
Points
intheknow 07/08/07 - 08:38 am
0
0
Why should HE be forced to

Why should HE be forced to revealed, who went to the tax office and paid his bill? I guess the next tome my sister, brothers, friends and neighbors, ask me to pay their while I am at the courthouse, I am going to have to produce ID and a birth certificate. Before you get started with, all the support Williams B.S., I would not vote for him to be dog catcher, but I believe in fairness.

intheknow
16
Points
intheknow 07/08/07 - 08:42 am
0
0
Everytime an allegation is

Everytime an allegation is made against anyone, resources come into play. Do not blame Williams, because Merry has sdome kind of fixation with him. The G.B.I. investigated and found no wrong doing, yet Merry decided along with some off the wall lawyer, that they needed their names in the paper. If you want to blame someone for wasting taxpayer's money, blame Merry and his COUSIN VINNY.

PFLY775
2
Points
PFLY775 07/08/07 - 09:20 am
0
0
The citizens of Augusta need

The citizens of Augusta need to ask themselves a question: Is this the way we want our elected officials to conduct themselves and thereby represent the city of Augusta?

intheknow
16
Points
intheknow 07/08/07 - 09:49 am
0
0
Williams has one vote. If he

Williams has one vote. If he is allowed to be disruptive at meetings, then I blame the entire commission. I had a serious promblem when Williams attempted to get involved with the workings of the Sheriff's Department. I have the upmost trust in the Sheriff's, who did not allow Williams to bully him around. That is why I am having a hard time understanding, why some would accuse the Sheriff of a cover up.

I4Putt2007
0
Points
I4Putt2007 07/08/07 - 10:09 am
0
0
Although it was quite

Although it was quite difficult to read, I agree with In The Know. It is the responsibility of the tax office to merely collect taxes that are due. It is not illegal or unethical to have someone else pay your bills. I certainly am not a fan of Mr. Williams but this writer had very little of importance to convey. I do agree with the writer on one point. I think when we lie and cause an investigation by the sherriff's department, we should be held accountable somehow.

fd1962
26
Points
fd1962 07/08/07 - 10:14 am
0
0
Paleeeeeze... 'the finite and
Unpublished

Paleeeeeze... 'the finite and precious resources he (Williams) stole from the sheriff's department'? The sheriff's department loves to jump on these sensational opportunities even more than the Comical does. Give us a break.

patriciathomas
42
Points
patriciathomas 07/08/07 - 12:06 pm
0
0
intheknow, why is every thing

intheknow, why is every thing that Marion Williams does the fault of someone else or the responsibility of someone else? Can't he be held responsible for his own actions?

SON of Scoob
434
Points
SON of Scoob 07/08/07 - 12:32 pm
0
0
Intheknow, I've read your

Intheknow, I've read your posts on this subject and believe you are trying to be fair with your perspective. The thing I don't understand is your position on who paid Marion's property taxes.

Being a law enforcement officer you have to know that if someone paid property taxes for a public official, that act would be considered at least unethical or a bribe. If this situation is as innocent as the example you gave about asking a family member to take your money to pay your taxes, wouldn't you expect a receipt for your CASH payment. And then if asked, why would you want to keep the person's name, that was your courier, a secret.

Put you law enforcement brain to work. Don't you think somthing smells about this transaction?

owensjef
13
Points
owensjef 07/08/07 - 01:42 pm
0
0
No pat, you go back to Mrs

No pat, you go back to Mrs Cooper's article, where you have nothing to say. The Chronicle using CSRA Help as a reference is a slap in the face to all fair and decent people.

owensjef
13
Points
owensjef 07/08/07 - 01:46 pm
0
0
Politicians always have

Politicians always have supporters pay fines and legal fees for them, so what are you talking about scoob

intheknow
16
Points
intheknow 07/08/07 - 01:50 pm
0
0
Well first of all why would

Well first of all why would anyone think, that Marion Williams would make any comment to the media. I will try to make myself as clear as possible. I believe that Williams is a jerk. Haven said that, I still believe in the law. Williams has not violated any laws that we know of. There is anpother article in today's paper, listing just some of the elected official who are just as bad, or worser than Williams. AK Hasan declared over $350.000.00 in deck. Hell I had MCG, calling me about $50.00. Which by the way, had already been paid. I just feel that we are giving Williams too much juice. As far as something smelling rotten, yes, the smell make terrible, but is it illegal. It is not yet a crime, to be a pain in the butt. IMO

BakersfieldCityLimits
1
Points
BakersfieldCityLimits 07/08/07 - 03:46 pm
0
0
Mr. Williams can and will do

Mr. Williams can and will do whatever he wants. All you people that want him to do otherwise are showing your inhearant racist backgrounds. Please, please, please, try and get into the 21st century we are not going to ride in the back of the Augusta bus, we going to drive. We're going to drive it where we won't to go to. Don't like where the bus going, get off.

SON of Scoob
434
Points
SON of Scoob 07/08/07 - 04:45 pm
0
0
D1216, you are correct, but

D1216, you are correct, but we are all accountable for our actions including Marion Williams. Every time Marion tries to drive the bus with his ignorant, self serving schemes he makes a stupid and obvious wrong turn. If you are riding on his bus I hope you have your seat belt fastened. And, you might consider that his bus could very well be on the road to jail. Good luck with your ride.

johnsmith
9
Points
johnsmith 07/08/07 - 05:42 pm
0
0
owens...inthe...D1216...I'll

owens...inthe...D1216...I'll ask again...grape or cherry? Of course it is in the public interest to know if some third party is paying a public official's taxes. Just as it is in our interest to know if someone else is paying for their gas bill, their lunch or their mortgage. And of course, it is news when someone files suit against a public official, be it Woody Merry or anyone else. That does not constitute the AC using them as a "reference." I don't know what kind of mental gymnastics you have to go through to defend MW no matter what he does. You wonder why people are "fixated" on him or are "out to get" him and-of course-the ONLY explanation you can come up with is racism. Hmm...was it racism when I was "fixated" on Robin Williams? Or Linda Shrenko? Guess I'm an equal-opportunity bigot, then...I must just hate EVERYBODY. Meanwhile, you'll keep making excuses for someone who flat lied, again and again and again, not about personal matters, but about matters of law and policy. You are as pathetic as MW...

t of i
25
Points
t of i 07/08/07 - 05:51 pm
0
0
johnsmith, you and your well

johnsmith, you and your well worded insights have been missed.

intheknow
16
Points
intheknow 07/08/07 - 06:16 pm
0
0
Sounds like you are the one

Sounds like you are the one being pathetic. I can only speak for myself. I have not and will not defend anyone that commits a crime. I will defend that person's right, to be treated fairly. JOHNSMITH, why are you not pushing for an investigation of Don Cheeks. Surly you do not believe that he did not play a role, in the land deal for his son-in-law?

cparker
83
Points
cparker 07/08/07 - 06:26 pm
0
0
Marion Williams is a

Marion Williams is a liar....Marion Williams was delinquent paying his property taxes.....Someone walked into the court house and paid the bill in cash.....None of these things are criminal. Since everybody is in an uproar, shouldn't we ask the tax assessor to collect late taxes by personal checks again. It is ridiculous to have this much talk about bribery and other criminal behavior simply because the bill was paid in cash. All delinquent tax bills are collected in guaranteed funds such as money order, cashier's check, or CASH!!! Marion Williams did not make this rule for the tax assessor's office. I am not defending Marion Williams, but the witch hunt has become old news. I need to know why Scooter Libby is not going to prison. Why Rep Foley gets to sleep with little boys and does not have to go to jail? Why immunity has been offered to Justice Department employees over the firing of the US attorneys? Many of the postings are from people that work a bit to hard to elevate Marion Williams' poor behavior afront serious issues affecting all of us. This Marion Williams bashing sounds like Woody Merry owns this site.

watching
0
Points
watching 07/08/07 - 06:34 pm
0
0
Until a case against Williams

Until a case against Williams is proven (tried and convicted), stop with all the slander/allegations. If it were not for him, we wouldn't know half of what is REALLY going on in our local government. With that, I would have certainly paid his or any other politician's taxes should he/she were SINCERELY working for the people in Augusta,as Williams is. And to all the justifiers that invoke the names of Robin Williams and Shrenko, through my research, those two were considered OUTCASTS by local right wingers and, therefore, carries no weight.

t of i
25
Points
t of i 07/08/07 - 06:47 pm
0
0
cparker, I doubt that a

cparker, I doubt that a contingent of posters in Augusta, GA, could accomplish much regarding scandals on the national level. What they can do, is to attempt to hold their local legislators to a higher level. I think that's all these folks are tring to do. So if you want to punt local level appropriate behaviour then how on earth are you ever to expect higher level potiical officials to be upstanding? And yes, they should be going after anyone who has betrayed the public trust.

BakersfieldCityLimits
1
Points
BakersfieldCityLimits 07/08/07 - 08:42 pm
0
0
Johnsmith; Mr. Williams is

Johnsmith;

Mr. Williams is OUR voice in Augusta. If the majority of the people in west Augusta don't like what he does or say, that make me know that he is right.

Its a new day. Just like Maya Angelou said " It's Morning time "

gcap
290
Points
gcap 07/08/07 - 09:08 pm
0
0
Never mind Marion Williams'

Never mind Marion Williams' delinquence -- in taxes or anything else. Just listen to him for five minutes. He's an idiot. And for you, D1216, it may be morning time, but it'll be a long, dreary day with no good end in sight unless Augusta-Richmond County does two things. First, demand that the Board of Education EDUCATE the county's children. Second, reconstruct the local government. Until both happen, the good people of Richmond County wil continue to move out. I did. And Marion Williams is the reason I did. Augusta is in deep trouble.

Son of God
0
Points
Son of God 07/08/07 - 09:10 pm
0
0
i suggest that everyone visit

i suggest that everyone visit the code of ethics book and live it. you might want to start with the word if the living god, the bible. in it hangs all the law. people perish for a lack of knowledge. we must study the word to show ourselves approved. love one another is the first commandment. how can you say you love jesus who you have never seen and can't love your brother who you see everyday? the fact is , you are a liar and the truth is not in you. always remember that god has the final say so in all matters. there is a way that seems right unto a man but the ends thereof are the ways of death and destruction. choose you this day whom you will serve. will you serve god or mammon? to the mayor, county commissioners and the board of education members, we are all equal so let's start treating each other as such. a good leader always care for others. leaders don't burn bridges, they build them, together. poor representation forced with controlled actions only bring destruction for everyone. exactly what is in those hearts? out of the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaketh. why try to condemn you brother for the speck in his eye when you have a boulder in your eye?getittogether

patriciathomas
42
Points
patriciathomas 07/08/07 - 09:14 pm
0
0
D1216, are you saying

D1216, are you saying anything Marion Williams does is fine if it infuriates responsible white people? You MUST be a Maya Angelou fan.

gcap
290
Points
gcap 07/08/07 - 10:48 pm
0
0
Like I said, Augusta is in

Like I said, Augusta is in deep trouble.

justus4
101
Points
justus4 07/09/07 - 04:41 am
0
0
HOW do these idiots get
Unpublished

HOW do these idiots get published? The chronicle is the problem... And ask," what crime happened while the sherriff investigated." Ha! This paper is a rag! The op-eds are clearly racist, including 98% of the readers. How bout finding out whats on fred's drive. This is an obstruction case to hide what fred is looking at...AND DOING.

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